It was how everyone spent their Saturday mornings for the longest time — sitting down in our pajamas with our bowl of…whatever cereal we collectively remember loving as a child and tuning in to our marathon of Saturday morning cartoons.
Looney Tunes was a staple of Saturday mornings, and animation in general, since they left movie theaters and made their way onto televisions around the world in the 1950s. While many of the characters and concepts had already been developed from their time as shorts in movie theaters, Warner Bros. wanted directors Tex Avery and Chuck Jones to be working with writers and artists to create more cartoons for these soon-to-be iconic characters.
With more people involved in the creation of these shorts, the teams involved had to make sure they had a very clear idea of how to represent these characters. This is not uncommon in a profession like television writing. In a world where numerous shorts were needed for an episode, and needed in a short amount of time, it was typically for writers to be hired on for even just one short to save time. This also made it a very tough job for the the directors to make sure characters felt the same between writers.
Still obsessed with Chuck Jones’ coyote/roadrunner rules. Awesome to so clearly, concisely define your characters. pic.twitter.com/MRd4zguD93
— Amos Posner (@AmosPosner) March 4, 2015
A recent tweet from filmmaker Amos Posner contains a photo of rules, created by Chuck Jones, to help keep writers on track when writing a short involving the constant battle between Wile E. Coyote and the Road Runner. The photo was taken at the Chuck Jones exhibit at the Museum of the Moving Image in New York.
It is interesting to see some of these obvious rules, like all of Coyote’s gadget’s coming from ACME, next to ones, like Road Runner never actually harming Coyote, which were not as obvious. Just goes to show some of the bits of work that audiences rarely grasp about television and movies.
What was your favorite scheme Wile E. Coyote used to try and catch the Road Runner? Let us know in the comments below.